Stanford Edged at the End by #2 Arizona
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - Spencer Jones scored 22 points, but Stanford men's basketball was outlasted at the end by No. 2/3 Arizona, 81-69, on Thursday night at the McKale Center.
The 20-point outing was the fifth of teh season for Jones, who shot 9-for-14 from the field and hit four 3-pointers. Michael O'Connell tied his season-high with 16 points, while Maxime Raynaud was in double figures with 10 points and seven rebounds. Harrison Ingram stuffed the stat sheet with four points and team highs of nine rebounds and five assists.
Bennedict Mathurin scored 24 points, Christian Koloko added 21 for the Wildcats, who labored through most of the first half after clinching the Pac-12 regular-season title on Tuesday, falling into a nine-point hole. Arizona found an offensive rhythm to close the half, kept hitting shots in the second and turned up the defensive pressure to remain undefeated (16-0) at home.
The Cardinal was much sharper in its second go-round against the Wildcats, hitting two more field goals in a torrid-shooting first half (12) than they did the entire game against Cal.
The Cardinal shot 15 of 28 in the first half against Arizona, including 7 of 10 from 3. O'Connell hit all four of his 3-pointers before the break. Arizona kept itself within reach by scoring 16 points off Stanford's 11 turnovers, then hit its final six shots to pull to 39-37 at halftime.
The Wildcats got it rolling at both ends in the second half, defense leading to breakouts and early-offense opportunities. Mathurin had two breakaway dunks during an individual 8-0 run that put Arizona up 67-58, and the Wildcats kept stretching the lead from there.
Stanford continued to struggle with turnovers in the second half and wasn't able to keep up its torrid shooting. The Cardinal shot 2 of 9 from 3 in the second half and finished with 17 turnovers that led to 23 Arizona points.
Stanford had a good defensive plan and moved the ball well to get open looks in the first half. The Cardinal weren't as sharp in the second, bothered by Arizona's defensive pressure, and missed several open shots.
Arizona needed some time to find a flow at both ends of the floor. Once the Wildcats did, they stretched the lead and prevented any type of run by the Cardinal.
Stanford: Plays at Arizona State on Saturday.
Arizona: Hosts California on Saturday